Tigers are not focused on rankings or ACC/NCAA seeding right now
When the NCAA selection committee revealed Clemson as its No. 9 overall seed during its in-season bracket reveal on Sunday, Brad Brownell was happy for his players.
“Certainly, it is a nice reward for the guys to know that we have been ranked and are playing well and things of that nature,” the Tigers’ head coach said Monday as part of the ACC Coaches’ Teleconference with the media.
So far, it’s been the best basketball season at Clemson in almost a decade. The Tigers head into the new week 20-4 overall and 9-3 in the ACC.
The Tigers are expected to move up in both the Associated Press and Coaches Polls later today and right now they own the ACC’s longest overall win streak (four games) and are the only undefeated team at home (13-0).
By the way, getting to 20 wins is the third fastest, in terms of games played, in Clemson history, while it also ranks second in terms of when it happened on the calendar.
As far as how Sunday’s bracket reveal by the selection committee will affect his team, Brownell was honest and said he really did not know.
“I hope not. I hope it is just more of the same for us,” he said. “It is not something we will talk about much, I’m sure.”
Brownell says he and the rest of his coaches will treat the No. 9 selection just like they did when the media ranked them 13th in the ACC Preseason Poll in October. They will treat it the same way they did when the AP and the Coaches Polls ranked the program for the first time in nearly eight years.
“Some of the media will talk about it a little bit, but our guys have done a pretty good job this year of just … we talk a lot about daily improvement and just focusing on the things we can control right in front of us,” he said.
So far that has worked out well. Clemson, who plays at Florida State on Wednesday, currently sits second in the ACC standings, a game ahead of Duke and a game and a half ahead of North Carolina and Louisville.
The top four seeds in the ACC get a two-day bye in the tournament. However, the Tigers are not worrying about or looking at any of that.
“We did not worry at the beginning of the year when nobody thought we were going to be very good and have not paid much attention when we started to have some success,” Brownell said. “So I’m hopeful that is not something that distracts them too much.”